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MP3 Soundness of Mind - Seasons of Aspect

Follow Soundness of Mind as the duo takes you on an epic musical journey from Death to Life. The album Seasons of Aspect marks the beginning of the end. Are you awake? https://www.tradebit.com

14 MP3 Songs in this album (50:06) !
Related styles: HIP-HOP/RAP: Hardcore Rap, HIP-HOP/RAP: Hip Hop

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Fresh and inventive are the two words that I think of most when I ponder on the genius behind the Dallas, Texas hip-hop group, Soundness of Mind. The group has survived through many different obstacles to get where they are today. Some of the trials have been more severe than others, but persistence and determination has been the driving force behind the eccentric rap duo, Rip Ravul (pka Inmate E) and V-Tre.

The story of Soundness of Mind begins North East of the Dallas / Ft. Worth metroplex in the city of Plano. In 1998 three close high school friends got together and created a hip-hop group by the name of Mystik Tokerz. The Mystik Tokerz wrote many songs together, but with no capabilities for recording, and no funds to rent studio time, nothing ever got recorded. The day came when one of the members lost interest and vision, and decided to leave. This left Inmate E and Reefa Keefa to decide whether or not to carry on with the group, or move on to seek bigger and better opportunities.

One day in the spring of 1999, Inmate E was doing his best to stay awake in his English class. He pulled out the thesaurus, to occupy his time. As he read through the pages an idea came to him. That idea would come to be a group called Soundness of Mind. The thought was that there would be three emcees fighting together towards one common goal, to preserve the truth. Only at the time there was one problem, there were only two members, Inmate E and Reefa Keefa.

In the fall of 1999, Inmate E got a job at a local music store. V-Tre also worked at the music store, and had asked around about the new guy. Through conversations with the other employees it was V-Tre’s belief that Inmate E was indeed a smoker. Being that V-Tre recently had surgery on his hand, he was in dire need of some help. He asked Inmate E if he could roll something up for him. Thus began the dawn of the now, Soundness of Mind.

V-Tre had been writing music in his spare time for many years, and also had access to a school recording studio. Three weeks later Inmate E, Reefa Keefa, and V-Tre would start recording their first true studio album, 100% Ghetto. This epic CD was finalized in 2001, and passed out to many people exclusively in the Dallas / Ft. Worth area. With no producer, the band used popular instrumentals. The three could see that something beautiful was starting to form, but they still had much more to learn.

In 2002 disaster struck the group. Reefa Keefa enlisted himself and was going off to the military to do at least a four year bid. Inmate E and V-Tre were highly disappointed, but kept the faith of their creation alive. “Me and E were too determined to not let this screw with our plans. We’ve never been in the mind frame to quit” V-Tre replied when asked about this.

Although Keefa’s departure was a crushing blow to the group’s plans, Soundness of Mind pursued that next level. On New Year’s of 2003 V-Tre was at his brother’s (Naesty) house celebrating the New Year. Everyone at the party had many questions about Soundness of Mind, but one question was asked that grabbed V-Tre’s full attention. It was from one of V-Tre’s younger brother’s best friend, Devin McCabe. He was curious if the group had a producer and said he was interested in working with them. Inmate E and V-Tre took a trip to McCabe’s house that following week, and were blown away by what McCabe could really do. They stayed at McCabe’s home studio all night drinking Tequila and exchanging ideas. Within a few weeks the three started building an album together slated with the name Seasons of Aspect.

Many months had passed, and the production for Seasons of Aspect was increasing. While taking off time from writing, and learning the tricks of production, one question was still lingering. Where was the third member? One night, Rip Ravul and V-Tre were enjoying a night off with one of their infamous drunken’ freestyle sessions. In the midst of bud ice forties being thrown back, and metaphors being used like a prom date, Inmate E’s twin brother decided to see what he had to put down on the instrumentals. Without a thought of hesitation Inmate E and V-Tre had found their answer. A new brain to their equation, Dude B.

Now with Dude B aboard, ideas were flowing full force, but production of Seasons of Aspect was taking longer than expected. The trio needed an album to release now. They decided to create what would be the first EP of a mini series entitled The Exhibits. Exhibit A

Exhibit A was the released in late 2003. The EP set up the release of the group’s second studio album named Hypnopedia released November of 2004. This became the group’s first “all original” album. When asked about the album, V-Tre said “I think this is the album that really helped us find ourselves and Soundness of Mind. We were too involved in trying to sound like our influences, and not us. (In Hypnopedia) There’s a lot of emotion, and topics that I don’t see other people doing, and the music’s just plain insane.” Inmates E’s response was “Yeah, and it’s probably the first hip-hop album made with almost no high hats even being used.”

A year would pass by, and the four found themselves endlessly still working on Seasons of Aspect. While the production side was still in the works, Inmate E linked up with another talented producer, Kaos of Ruffside Productions from Atlanta, Georgia. Putting all five heads together like something out of Voltron, the group was preparing to release their next segment. Exhibit B was dropped in April of 2005. “Exhibit B was a new level for us, and this is the point where I felt I needed a change from the Inmate E stature. We were doing new music and reinventing ourselves in new a way. Based upon my style I decided to run with Rip Ravul as my new name”, Ravul said. The EP was passed out with an advertisement on the back on the CD stating that Seasons of Aspect would finally be released November 2005.

The New Year came and went, and nothing was released from the group. Dude B in early 2006 left the group to pursue other life goals, once again leaving Soundness of Mind with only two emcees, again. Worst of all, no Seasons of Aspect album. Years would gradually pass without any word or sightings of Soundness of Mind. Many soon believed there were finished rhyming all together, with no new material ever surfacing after Exhibit B. “We were just perfecting our craft and beefing up our own studios” says Rip Ravul.

Now in 2008 the release and buzz of Exhibit C solidifies them that they’re indeed still in the game. Exhibit C displays top-notch produced tracks (primarily done by Rip Ravul and V-Tre themselves) and not to mention some of the best lyrical content to date from the two. This EP also brought forth Soundness of Mind’s producer (Devin McCabe) from behind the boards onto a track, along with V-Tre’s little brother (Naesty). I noticed also that Reefa Keefa was listed on a track entitled "Most of the Time". “It was a blessing in its self to do a track again with Keefa” Rip Ravul stated.

Soundness of Mind today remains to be just two emcees, and the group doesn’t plan on changing the formula any time soon. Just in what I’ve seen this past weekend, while hanging with the group and interviewing them, I can see now why they have the confidence that they do. The third full length studio album Seasons of Aspect has been set to be released on April 7th, 2009. I personally can’t wait to hear Seasons of Aspect myself. According to the group, the future it is going to be bigger and brighter than ever imagined before. I couldn’t agree more.

Ethen J. Isaac 2008, Freelance Writer

© 2009 Soundness of Mind / Discord 72 LLC.

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